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For Official Use Only 




Prepared at the 


Fort Sill, Okla. 




Document Xo. 754. 

Office of The Adjutant General. 

Washington, February 26, 19 18. 
The following "Bayonet Training Manual," prepared at the 
School of Arms, Fort Sill, Okla., is approved and published for 
the information and guidance of the Armies of the United States. 
[062.1 A. G. O.] 

By order of the Secretary of War, 

Major General, Acting Chief of Staff. 
Official : 

H. P. McCAIX. 

The Adjutant General. 

Section I. 


The Spirit of the Bayonet 5 

Continuous Training 6 

Development of the Individual 6 

Teamwork 7 

Section II. 

Equipment 7 

Discs 8 

Withdrawal Boards; . . . . 8 

Other Apparatus .- 8 

Training Stick. 

Plastrons, Masks and Gloves. 

Wooden Rifle. 

Boxing Gloves. 

Wrestling Mat. 

Trench System 9 

Section III. 

Requirements of Good Bayonet Work 10 

Killing Range ; . 10 

Bayonet an Offensive Weapon 10 

Length of Lessons and Practice 12 

Work Made Interesting 12 

Progression. . . 12 

Physical Development 12 

Classes for Officers and Non-commissioned Officers 13 

Conduct of Classes 13 

Size of Class 13 

To Teach a Position 13 

Signals 14 

Section IV. 

General Instructions for Bayonet Training 15 

Training Outlined and Movements Explained in Detail.. 17 

Section V. 


Vulnerable Parts of Body 18 

Guard 18 

Short Guard 20 



Rest 20 

High Port 20 

Long Thrust 20 

Withdrawal from Long Thrust 22 

Practices for Lesson 1 23 


Parries 25 

Fending Off 25 

Practices for Lesson II 25 


Short Thrust 27 

Practices for Lesson III 21 


The Jab 21 


Methods of Injuring an Opponent 28 

Trench or Vertical Butt Strokes 28 

Open Ground or Horizontal Butt Strokes 29 

To Disarm an Opponent 30 

Summary of Lessons 31 

Circle Exercises, Hand Parries, etc 33 

The Wooden Rifle and Personal Combat 34 

Disengage ' 35 


Rushing ' 35 

Rushing in Groups . . 36 

Team Fighting : 36 

Trench Combat 36 

Assault Practice 37 

Trench System for Assault Practice 37 

Combined Tactics 37 

Trained Soldiers' Daily Practice 37 

Section VI. 

Tactics of the Bayonet 38 



Plate 1-A, Dummies and Equipment. 9 

Plate 1-B, Trench System 11 

Plate 2, Jumping 16 

Plate 3, Guard 18 

Plate 4, Rest 20 

Plate 5, Long Thrust 21 

Plates 6-A and 6-B, "W ithdrawal frcm Lcrg Thrust 22 

Plates 7-A, 7-B and 7-C, Parries. 24 

Plate 8-A, Short Thrust. 26 

Plate 8-B, Withdrawal from Short Thrust 26 

Plate 9, The Jab 27 

Plates 10-A and 10-B,Buttstrokes 29 

Plate 1 1, Use of Training Stick 31 

Plate 12, Circle Exercise S3 

Plates 13-A, 13-B and 13-C, Disengage 35 

U. S. Bayonet Manual, 1918. 



The Spirit of the Bayonet. 

1. It is an easy matter to teach 'the few simple technical 
details of bayonet combat, but an instructor's success will be 
measured by his ability to instil into his men the will and 
desire to use the bayonet. This spirit is infinitely more than 
the physical efforts displayed on our athletic fields; more than 
the enthusiasm of the prize-ring; more, even, than the grim 
determination of the firing line — it is an intense eagerness to 
fight and kill hand to hand, and is the overwhelming impulse 
behind every successful bayonet assault. 

Bayonet fighting is possible only beoause every red j blooded 
man naturally possesses the fighting instinct. This inherent 
desire to fight and kill must be carefully watched for and 
encouraged by the instructor. It first appears in a recruit when 
he begins to handle his bayonet with facility, and increases as 
his confidence grows. With the mastering of his weapon there 
comes to him a sense of personal fighting superiority and a 
desire for physical conflict. He knows that he can fight and 
win. His practice becomes snappy - and full of strength. He 
longs to 'test his ability against an enemy's body; to prove that 
his bayonet is irresistible. He pictures an enemy at every prac- 
tice thrust and drives home his bayonet with strength, precision 
and satisfaction. Such a man will fight as he has trained — 
consistently, spiritedly, and effectively. While waiting for the 
zero hour he will not fidget nervously. He will go over the 
top and win. 

Successful training implies that men will use on the battle- 
field what they have learned on the drill-ground. To do this 
a man must move to the attack possessed not only of a deter- 
mination to win, but also of a perfect confidence in his third 

arm — the rifle. Such a confidence is born only of long, constant 
practice, which is the very essence of bayonet training. 

Without this, a bayonet assault will fail. The man who 
bores in at a dead run enjoys the advantage of a superior 
morale. The man who waits ito fence loses his own nerve and 
helps the enemy take heart. The enemy may have a longer 
weapon than ours. This gives him the advantage if we stand 
off and fence, but gives us the advantage if we close with him. 

The growth of trie spirit of the bayonet is fostered by short 
talks on what has already been accomplished with the bayonet. 
The men must be thoroughly informed of probable treachery on 
the part of the enemy. They must be informed of the possible 
enemy tricks of pretending to surrender or to be wounded, only 
to fire upon or bayonet their prospective captors the instant 
they lessen their aggressiveness. 

The bayonet is the deciding factor in every assault, and the 
soldier must realise that its 'successful employment requires of 
him not only individual physical courage, but also perfect dis- 
cipline and a thorough knowledge of teamwork. In a bayonet 
fight the nerviest, best disciplined and most skillful man wins — 
the will to use the bayonet plus cold steel and thorough training 
assure success. 

Continuous Training. 

2. The perfect confidence of the soldier in his weapon as 
required by ithis manual is 'the outcome only of long, continuous 
practice. To this end bayonet training will be kept up at all 
times except while actually in the trenches. 

Development of the Individual. 

3. It is absolutely essential that each man be taught to think 
and act for himself, and -there must be no interval of time 
between the thinking and the acting. To attain 'this end, make 
the men use their brains and eyes to the fullest extent (by 
carrying out the practices, so far as possible, without words of 
command, i. e., by demonstration. Cause them to parry sticks, 
to thrust at a shifting target as soon as it is 'stationary, etc. 
The class should always w T ork in pairs and act on the principle 
of "master and pupil" alternately. This in itself tends to 
develop individuality and confidence. Sharp, jerky words of 
command produce mechanical movements of the piece and will 
not be used. Rapidity of movement and alertness of mind are 
taught by various quickening exercises and games which require 

quick thinking and instantaneous muscular response. Boxing, 
wrestling, and all kinds of rough-and-tumble fighting play an 
important roie in the development of tne individual. 

4. While actual bayonet combat is individual, each man must 
understand from the very first that he is righting for his side 
and not for himself alone. It follows, therefore, that he must 
be familiar with the tactical employment of the bayonet. He 
must not only know how, but when and when not to use it. 
For instance, it is absurd for a bayonet man to chase a retreat- 
ing enemy and stab nim in the ba^k; he has a bullet in his 
rifle for just that purpose. Again, the man who, forgetting 
that he is only a member of the team, rushes ahead of his 
comrades is always needlessly killed, thus helping the enemy 
and wasting his own life, as well as the time and efforts of the 
country he is trying to serve. Perfect teamwork is required in 
order to have a good line in the attack, but it is of more impor- 
tance there than on dress parade. 

The bayonet man is frequently called upon to act as pro- 
tector to his constant comrade, the grenade^thrower, who is 
practically unarmed. This one fact requires that the bayonet 
man be familiar w T ith the tactics of both weapons — bayonet and 
grenade — in mopping-up parties, trench raids, shell holes, and 
assaulting: waves. 

The supreme test of a soldier's training is to demand of him 
that he hold a position at the point of the bayonet. In such 
cases he must know just how to coordinate himself with the 
grenadiers and machine-gunners. He must know just what kind 
of a counter charge to make and exactly when to start it. 

Finally, there is for the instructor to consider the close rela- 
tion between controlled rifle fire and the bayonet, the last — 
and perhaps the most important — phase of bayonet training. 



5. The rifle must always be in good condition — clean, oiled, 
and in perfect working order. Care must be taken that the 
object representing the enemy be incapalble of injuring the 

bayonet or butt. Only light sticks are to be used for parrying 
practice with the rifle. 

The chief causes of injury to the bayonet are: Delivering a 
sweeping point instead of a true or direct point, failure to 
withdraw the bayonet clear of the dummy before advancing 
and placing the dummies on hard, unprepared ground. 


6. For practicing direction there must always be an aiming 
mark on the dummy. Cardboard discs, 3 inches in diameter, 
can be improvised for this purpose. By continually changing 
the position of the disc the life of the dummy can be con- 
siderably prolonged. Five or six circles can be painted on the 
dummies to take the place of discs; the discs, thowever, will 
always be used in competitions. A number of circles, painted 
white, make the best marks. 


7. Dummies, representing in size the trunk of a body, should 
be constructed of brushwood whenever available; failing this, 
use sacks filled with the material at hand that will offer most 
resistance to penetration and withdrawal without injuring the 
bayonet. Dummies must be so suspended that they offer the 
most resistance to the attacker and at the same time can be 
easily replaced. 

Withdrawal Boards. 

8. The withdrawal board is an instrument used to impress 
upon the mind of the student the amount of resistance to be 
expected in withdrawing the bayonet after a thrust. It can be 
constructed of a barrel stave or other board of similar dimen- 
sions, hinged at the top to a 4 x 4-inch upright, the lower end 
being left free. The instructor causes the student to place his 
bayonet between the upright and the board, and then presses 
upon the free end of the board, thus clamping the bayonet 
between the board and the upright. The amount of pressure 
exerted (by the instructor varies with the resistance which it is 
desired to illustrate. 

Other. Apparatus. 

9. Service Rifle and Bayonet. — Scabbard on bayonet, except 
when practicing on dummies or withdrawal boards. 

Plastrons, masks, and gloves — one set for each man. 

The Training Stick is a light stick, 5 feet to 5 feet 6 inches 


long and % inch to 1 inch in diameter, padded at one end and pro- 
vided at the other with a light rope or wire thrusting ring 
having a diameter of 3 inches. One for each man. 

The Wooden Rifle. — Saine outline as the service rifle, except 
that the part which corresponds to the bayonet is in prolonga- 
tion of the -barrel, no attempt being made to have the bayonet 
below the barrel, as this would weaken the junction. The 
balance is the same as the service rifle, and the weight nearly 
the same. A tennis ball, fastened to the end by canvas strips, 
makes the best pad. Hair or excelsior will answer. One for 
each man. 

Unless this very important part of a soldier's training equip- 
ment becomes an article of issue, it can be sawed out of a 
piece of timber 2" x 6" x 5', and trimmed into shape by hand. 
The length of the wooden rifle, with tennis ball attached, can 
be made the same as the Model 1917 rifle, with bayonet fixed. 
No effort should be made to use the present fencing rifle. It 
is worse than useless. 

Boxing gloves and a wrestling mat are essential parts of the 
equipment. They are indispensable in developing close and 
rough-and-tumble fighting. 

Trench System. 

10. There must be one or more -trench systems for use in 
the assault training, trench and obstacle jumping, mopping-up 

Plate 1-A. — Dummies axd Combat Equipment. 

parties, trench raiding, and, in general, for the tactical applica- 
tion of the principles of the 'bullet, bayonet and grenade 

No effort is, or should be, made to prescribe a type trench 
system. The instructor knows now what he wants; the details 
are left to his own ingenuity. If the terrain is suitable for the 
construction of dugouts, moving and pendulum targets, dum- 
mies, etc., a combined course will easily result. 

The proper construction and upkeep of the dummies and the 
repair of the assault training courses form part of the duties 
of the officers directly responsible for this part of the training. 




Requirements of Good Bayonet Work. 

11. To attack effectively with the bayonet requires nerve, 
good direction, strength, and quickness during a state of wild 
excitement and probably physical exhaustion. 

Killing Range. 

12. The maximum killing range of the bayonet is about 5 
feeit (measured from opponent'^ eyes to your own), but more 
often the killing is at closer quarters — at 2 ;eet or less — when 
troops are struggling corps a corps in the trenches or darkness. 

Bayonet an Offensive Weapon. 

13. Remember -always that the bayonet is essentially an 
offensive weapon. Rush straight at an opponent with the point 
threatening his throat and deliver the thrust wherever an 
opening presents itself. If no opening is obvious, one must be 
made by deflecting the opponent's piece or by threatening him 
on one side and driving in on the other. But keep boring in. 
The man who fails ito take advantage of an opening of one-fifth 
of a second in which to thrust may lose his life. 

In a bayonet assault all ranks go forward to kill or be killed. 
and only those who have developed skill and strength by con- 
stant training will be able to kill. 





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Plate 1-B. — Trench System Suitable for 
Assault Training, and Combined Tac- 
tics of Rifle, Bayonet and Grenade. 

There is no sentiment about the use of the bayonet. It is a 
cold-blooded proposition. The bayonet fighter kills or is killed. 
Few bayonet wounds come to the attention of the surgeon. 

Length of Lessons and Practice. 

14. As it is not the intention nor is it necessary to make the 
technique of bayonet fighting difficult, long detail is quite 
unnecessary, and serves only to make the work [monotonous. 
All instruction must be carried out on common-sense lines. It 
should seldom be necessary to give a demonstration more than 
two or three times, after which the individual should acquire 
the correct position by practice. For this reason, a lesson or 
daily practice should rarely last more than one hour, given in 
two parts of half an hour each. Remember that nothing kills 
interest so quickly as monotony. 

Strive for simplicity in all explanations. Do not quibble over 
minutiae. Insist on basic principles only. Each man has his 
own individual way of fighting. 

Work Made Interesting. 

15. Interest in the work is 'to be created by explaining the 
reasons for the various positions, the method of handling the 
rifle and bayonet, and the uses of the thrusts. Questions should 
be put to the men in order to ascertain whether or not they 
understand these reasons. When men realize the object of 
their work they naturally take a greater interest in it. The 
instructor must have the men consider him a trainer and helper 
Competitions arouse and maintain interest in the work. 


16. Under the plan as herein prescribed, the work is carefully 
divided into successive steps, and this progression must not be 
delayed in order to obtain correct positions and good direction. 
These points having been properly covered in the instruction, 
their proficiency, quickness, and strength result from continual 

Physical Development. 

17. Every officer and soldier must be brought to the highest 
state of physical development and kept in that condition. A 
man must train with the bayonet as a champion trains for a 
contest in which his title is at stake. 

In order to encourage dash and gradually strengthen the leg 


muscles, from the beginning of the training all classes should 
be practiced in charging short distances, jumping trenches and 
hurdles, jumping in and vaulting out of trenches, etc. 

Classes for Officers and Ncn-Ccmmis6icned Officers. 

18. All company officers and non-commissioned officers must 
be trained as bayonet instructors in order that they may be 
able to teach their men this very important part of a soldier's 
training, which must be regularly practiced during the whole 
of the service at home and during the rest periods behind the 
firing line. 

Conduct of Classes. 

19. The class is always formed in two ranks facing each 
other, with a two-pace interval. The instructor goes wherever 
necessary, but while demonstrating a movement he should sta- 
tion himseil to one tianic and in prolongation of trie cencer line 
between ranks. 

Each lesson is begun with a series of quickening movements, 
exercises, or games (all men like to play games) which develop 
coordination of the muscles used in bayonet combat. After 
combat practice, the instructor snoula review movements 
taught in the recruit course and correct all errors in detail. 
This will correct faults induced by simulated individual fighting. 

20. Since the bayonet will be used in trenches which turn at 
the traverses, communication trenches, etc., to the right as 
well as to the left, it is necessary to teach men to use the rifle 
with either hand in front. This in order always to present the 
bayonet to the enemy before the body. 

Men learn to use the piece left-handed (right hand in front) 
with but little practice, and many prefer it. It has the advan- 
tage of placing the stronger arm in front, where it directs the 
piece better and adds strength to the parries. 
Size of Class. 

21. The maximum number of men to be instructed by one 
trainer is twenty; better results will be obtained with classes 
of ten. Each man requires individual instruction and super- 
vision. Large classes make this impossible. 

To Teach a Position. 

22. First demonstrate the position and explain all essential 
points, giving reasons for them. Then show the position again, 
making the class observe each movement, so that from the 


very beginning of his training a man is taught to use his eyes 
and brain. Order the class to assume and practice the position 
just explained, fi^k out xne man wno shows the best position 
and have the class look at and copy him. His position will not 
be ideal, but it is more nearly correct than those assumed by 
the remainder, who, being beginners, cannot distinguish between 
a good position and an ideal one. 

Do not make the mistake of trying to get a class of begin- 
ners to idealize at once; only 'by constant practice and con- 
tinual correction can perfection be obtained. 

For closer personal instruction, the instructor may call out 
the men by pairs, letting the others practice at will the posi- 
tions and movements already taught. 

Do everything you can to encourage the men to practice with 
the bayonet, training stick, etc., -while off duty around barracks 
or camp, while at rest during other drills, etc. Utilize your own 
rest periods for short talks on the use and spirit of the bayonet. 


23. In practicing the various movements, the use of signals 
should ibe begun as early as practicable. Their object is to 
coordinate the eyes with the muscles, thus training the men 
to see and to avail themselves quickly of openings. The signals 
were devised to supersede the vicious custom of turning bayonet 
work into a drill fay the use of commands, which deadens a 
soldier's initiative and ignores (the training of his eye. 

These signals are not imitations of the movements they call 
for; imitations would be of little advantage to the pupil. The 
idea is to indicate with the trainer's hand an opening which the 
pupils perceive and act upon. 

The signals, easily learned, will be used by the men working 
in pairs — one signalling, the other thrusting, etc. 

To signal for the following positions or movements, the 
trainer moves as indicated: 

Guard. — Assume it, left hand at back, right elbow at side, right 
forearm pointing to front, fist closed. 

Short Guard. — Same as guard, except that the arm is drawn 
straight to the rear until the fist is at the right side. 

Long Thrust. — Clap the right palm, fingers apart and extended, 
to that part of the body toward which the soldier is to aim. 

Short Thrust. — Same as long thrust, except the fist is closed. 


If pupil is not in position of short guard when he gets the signal, 
he comes to that position and executes short thrust. 

Jab. — Place both closed fists under the chin. 

Parry. — Strike a blow diagonally across the body in the direc- 
tion the parry is to be made, fist closed. Follow by signal for 

Butt Strokes, — Make an upper cut with the fist to indicate a 
butt stroke to the crotch, a right hook for butt stroke to the jaw, 
an overhand swing for butt stroke to the head. 

Slash (following butt stroke). — After butt stroke signal, carry 
the hand upward, fingers extended and joined, and slash down. 

Disengage, — Describe an arc with the right hand, fingers ex- 
tended and joined, in the direction the disengage is to be made. 
Make the arc with a forward motion. Follow by signal for 

Cut-Over. — Describe an arc up and forward with the right 
hand, fingers extended and joined, in the direction the cut-over 
is to foe made. Follow by signal for thrust. In executing the 
movements the point of the bayonet follows the movement ox tiie 
trainer's hand, regardless of the relative right or left. When the 
trainer wishes the pupil to step forward with the rear foot in 
making any of the movements, the trainer steps to the rear as he 
gives the signal. 



Practice and Combat. 

24. (a) Scafobards will not be removed from the bayonet 
except for thrusting at dummies and practice at witndrawal 

(b) The guard, withdrawal, thrusts, parries, and the jab will 
be taught first with the left, then the right, foot forward. Later 
the men must become ambidextrous in handling the rifle. 

(c) The withdrawal position after a long thrust is the starting 
position for a short thrust. The short thrust naturally follows a 
long thrust. 

(d) From the outset the class will be practiced frequently in 
making short charges in the open. This is a good quickening 
exercise, and it also develops the leg muscles. 


(e) A target to thrust at will always be named when 
working by command; or if by signal, by position of hand or 
training stick ; it will also be clearly marked on all dummies. 

(f) Ranks working together must always be far enough apart 
to prevent accidents when thrusts are being made. When 
thrusts are made advancing, the ranks will change positions by 
coming to high port, double timing past each other and turning 
about. When working against dummies men will always con- 
tinue the movement past the dummies, which they will leave on 
their right. 

(g) The withdrawal, once taught, will be made after each 
thrust. After a thrust, advancing rear foot or on the advance, 
the hand will always be moved up the rifle on the withdrawal. 

(h) The padding of the training stick will be as small as is 
consistent with safety. 

(i) In the second practices the thrusts will also be practiced 
deliberately and progressively on dummies placed, as a prepara- 
tion for assault training, in positions of increasing difficulty, 
e. g., on parapets and steps of shallow trenches and in fire and 
communicating trenches. 

(j) The entire five lessons will be taught right-handed before 
any left-handed practice is allowed. 

(k) Jumping will usually 
be done from the high port 
b y throwing the piece 
sharply to the front on 
taking off and bringing it 
back in on landing. Some 
men jump hurdles very 
easily by, holding the rifle 
in the guard position and 
throwing it up quickly on 
taking off. The grasp of 
the hands remains the same, 
and the piece is started 
down again when the man 
is at the highest point in 
his jump, thus bringing him down in a good position for thrust- 
ing. This applies the principle of jumping with weights. 
(Plate 2.) 

25. The system of training herein prescribed is based on the 
direct appeal to the student's brain through his eye, his natural 


Plate 2. — Jumping. 

instinct being utilized to the greatest extent, and the maximum 
amount of time being spent in practicing at will what has been 
shown him by the instructor. Instruction by demonstration rather 
than by word of command is to be the invariable method. 

26. Each detail, after receiving individual instruction, will 
double-time back to its place in ranks, and will practice what 
they have been previously taught, correcting one another's 

At least once during each lesson the class should be formed in 
two ranks for the following exercise: As the instructor, who 
carries a training stick, approaches each man, that man will 
come to guard and threaten the instructor with his point as long 
as he is sufficiently near to attack. If the instructor holds the 
padded end above his waist line, a parry is required ; if below, a 
butt stroke or kick. If the ring is presented, a thrust is required. 
The stick is "dead" when the ring is on the ground. 

27. The following sequence will be adhered to in each lesson : 
All instruction will first be demonstrated to the class by the 

instructor with a man, at a dummy or with a training stick. 
The class, in class formation, will then practice at will all they 
have previously learned while the instructor gives each detail 
of two men individual instruction in the present lesson. The 
size of details may later be increased, according to the proficiency 
of the class. At the conclusion of the hour the instructor may 
review previous lessons by words of command. 

28. The instructor must encourage the men to cultivate a facial 
expression of sternness, strength, eagerness to fight, and confi- 
dence in winning. 



29. Bayonet training may be divided into : 

(a) The recruit course, which consists of five lessons, and 
assault training. 

(b) The trained soldiers' daily practice, which constantly 
reviews the principles taught the recruit and combines the 
assault with musketry and grenade warfare. 

30. The recruit course is so arranged that after six weeks 


service he will be able to begin the assault training. (Note: 
It is assumed that the first two weeks of a recruit's service will 
be given over to drawing equipment, vaccinations, inoculations, 
etc.) He will receive one Hour instruction each day, given in 
two parts of half an hour each. The men will wear only such 
clothing as will permit freedom of movement in tne training. 
Shoes should be hobbed in order to prevent slipping. Helmets, 
belts and packs may be required in tests and competitions. 


Vulnerable Parts of Body. 

31. The point of the bayonet should be directed against an 
opponent's throat, especially in hand j to-hand righting, so. that 
the point will enter easily and make a fatal wound on pene- 
trating a few inches. Also being near the opponent's face, it 
tends to make him flinch. Other vulnerable and usually exposed 
parts are the face, chest, lower abdomen, thighs, and, when 
the back is turned, the kidneys. The arm pit, which may be 
reached with a jab, if the throat is protected, is vulnerable be- 
cause it contains large 
blood vessels and a nerve 

Four to six inches 
penetration is enough to 
incapacitate and allow a 
quick withdrawal, where- 
as if a bayonet is driven 
home too far it is often 
impossible to withdraw 
it. In such cases a round 
must be fired to break 
up the obstruction. 
32. Point of the bayo- 
net directed at the base 
of the opponent's throat, 
the rifle, not canted, held 
firmly but not rigidly 
with both hands, the 
left hand, palm against 
side of nfle, at the 

Plate 3. — Guard. 


most convenient position in front of the rear sight so that 
the left arm is only slightly bent, the right hand, palm to the 
left and just over the navel, grasping the small of the stock, 
the right forearm pressing the upper part of the butt to the 
body, legs separated as in taking a natural step and meeting 
with resistance, left foot leading, left knee slightly bent, feet 
separated laterally a few inches and both feet flat on the ground, 
toes pointed as the man naturally points them in walking. The 
weight is balanced over both legs. 

The position must not be constrained in any way. but must 
be one of aggression, alertness, and readiness to go forward 
for instant attack. 

The guard position will also be taught with the right foot 
in front. (Plate 3.) 


The point of the bayonet is directed at the base of the 
opponent's throat because that is the most vulnerable part of 
the body. The rifle is held with both hands to give the greatest 
strength. The barrel is up ; i. e. t ''not canted/' because this 
is the most offensive way of holding it. The palms of the 
hands are against the sides of the rifle because in this position 
the piece is not canted, and also the wrists are not bent in 
making the parries. The hands are in the positions described 
because they give the best grip of the rifle and get it well 
advanced toward the opponent so that he can be reached with 
a minimum movement of the rifle; at the same time sufficient 
play is allowed to run him through. The legs are separated 
as in taking a natural step and meeting with resistance because 
this is what actually happens to a man in bayonet combat. 
Separating the feet laterally a few inches gives the man a 
"broader and firmer base. The position is not constrained be- 
cause if it were the muscles would soon tire and freedom of 
motion would be lost. 


(1 I Leaning body back. 

(2) Left arm too much bent, or too straight. 

Right hand held too low and too far back. 
[4) Rifle grasped too rigidly, restraining all freedom of 


Short Guard. 

^Left hand grasping rifle just under stocking swivel, left arm 
slightly bent, right hand grasping small of stock, stock against 
right hip. Point directed at base of opponent's throat. Body, 
legs, and feet as in guard. 


33. Assume a position of rest in the 
easiest way without moving the feet. 
(Plate 4.) 

High Port. 

34. From the position of guard, without 
changing the grasp of the hands, carry the 
piece diagonally across the body until the 
left wrist is level with and in front of the 
left shoulder. 

When jumping ditches, surmounting ob- 
stacles, etc., the position of the piece is 
approximately maintained with the left 
hand alone, leaving the right hand free. 
The high port is adopted only when act- 
ually preparing to assault. At other times 
the rifle is carried on the shoulder, at the 
trail, or slung, according to circumstances. 

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Plate 4. — Rest. 

Long Thrust. 

35. Grip the rifle with all your strength and vigorously deliver 
the point from the guard position to the full extent of the left 
arm, extending quickly the whole body to the front, butt running 
along the inside of and against the right forearm. If in making 
the thrust the right elbow is carried low, so as to clamp the butt 
between the right forearm and the right side of the body, it 
furnishes a brace against the point being forced aside. In deliv- 
ering the thrust the butt remains between the right forearm and 
the body. 

The leading knee and ankle are well bent, the rear leg braced 
with the heel raised, the body inclined well forward. 

The power of a thrust comes from the right arm, the shoulders, 
the back, the legs, and the weight of the body. The left arm is 
used more to direct the point of the bayonet. A delivered thrust 
throws a man off his balance, but in fighting this is instantly 
recovered by stepping forward with the rear foot. After a mar, 
has learned the details of a thrust it will always be delivered 


while advancing. The eyes must be fixed on the object at which 
the thrust is made. 

In making thrusts other than straight to the front, the leading 
foot should move laterally in the same direction in which the 
thrust is made. 

The long thrust is made at an opponent at a range of about 5 
feet from the at- 
tacker's eye. It is 
very important to 
be able to judge 
this distance. In 
advancing on a 
dummy, men are 
prone to let the mo- 
mentum of the body 
carry the point 
through the dummy 
without making the 
thrust. This must 
be guarded against, 
as it brings your 

Plate 5. — Long Thrust. 

point forward at the same rate of speed as your body, which is 
fairly uniform and easily judged. The darting forward of the 
point at the last instant gives a speed that is harder to judge. 
(Plate 5.) 

The rifle is gripped hard because the point, in entering the body, 
will meet with great resistance. The leading knee and ankle are 
well bent, the rear leg braced with the heel raised and the body 
inclined well forward, because in this position the maximum 
amount of reach and power are obtained in the thrust. The rear 
foot is always brought forward in order to preserve the balance, 
and also ibecause the thrust will usually be made advancing. The 
eyes must be fixed on the object aimed at in order to secure a hit. 
Common Faults. 
(1) Rifle drawn back just before delivering thrust. 
_ (2) Elbow and butt of rifle held as high as or against the 
right shoulder. 

(3) Eyes not directed at object. 

(4) Leading knee not sufficiently bent. 

(5) Body not inclined forward enough. 


(6) Failure of point to go forward on a straight line. 

(7) Butt not braced against inside of right forearm. 

(8) Doing too much work with the arms and not getting the 
body into it. 

Withdrawal from 

Long 1 hrust. 

Plate 6-B. — Withdrawal from 
Long Thrust at Prone Dummy. 


Long Thrust. 

36. To withdraw the bayo- 
net after a "long thrust" has 
been delivered, jerk the rifle 
straight back until the right 
hand is behind the hip, this 
without unduly relaxing the 
grasp of the small of the 
stock, and immediately re- 
sume the "guard" position. 

Don't try to do all the 
work with your arms. Carry 
the weight of your body to 
the rear by straightening out 
the leading leg and straight- 
ening the body up at the 
waist. Yank the piece to 
the rear with the shoulders 
and arms. If the leverage or 
proximity to the object trans- 
fixed renders it necessary, 
the left hand must first be 
slipped toward the muzzle, 
and when a pupil reaches 
the stage of delivering a 
"thrust" while advancing on 
a dummy or thrusting ring, 
he will adopt this* method. 

After every thrust, make 
a rapid withdrawal before 
coming to guard. A quick 
withdrawal is necessary to 
get ready to meet another 
enemy, to prevent the one 
just stuck from bending your 
bayonet in falling, and to 
prevent him attempting to 

injure you. Men still have fight left in them after you stick them 
unless you hit a vital spot, but when the bayonet comes out and 
the air sucks in and they begin to bleed on the inside they feel 
the pain and lose their fight. (Plates 6- A and 6-B.) 
Common Faults. 

(1) Not making withdrawal vigorously enough. 

(2) Not drawing bayonet back on line of penetration, i. c, 
letting butt drop. 

First Practice, Thrusting at Changing Targets. 

37. The class, working in pairs, with the instructor supervising, 
should be practiced in thrusting in various directions, e. g. (1; 
at the opposite man's hand, which is placed in various positions 
on and off the body; (2) at thrusting, rings, etc., tied on the 
ends of sticks. This practice must be done without word of 

Second Practice, Thrusting at Discs on Dummies. 

38. The men will be taught to transfix a di^c or circle painted 
on a dummy, first from a halt at a distance of about 5 feet from 
the dummy (/. e., the extreme range of the bayonet), and then, 
after advancing three or more paces, later increasing the distance 
and speed as the men progress. The advance must be made in 
a practical and natural way, and should be practiced with either 
foot to the front when the thrust is delivered. The rifle must 
never be drawn back just before making a thrust in a forward 
movement. The impetus of the body and the forward stretching 
of the arms supply the maximum force. 

The bayonet must be withdrawn immediately after the thrust 
has been delivered and a forward threatening attitude assumed 
to the side of or beyond the dummy. 

Unless the rifle is firmly gripped, it is liable to injure the hand. 
By gripping the rifle as far back on the small of the stock as the 
comb will permit, the forefinger will be saved from being cut by 
the trigger guard. 

To guard against accidents, the men must be at least 5 feet 
apart when the practice is carried out collectively. 

The principles of this practice will be Observed while thrusting 
at dummies in trenches, standing upright on the ground, or 
suspended from gallows. They should be applied at first slowly 
and deliberately, for no attempt must be made to carry out the 
assault training before the men have been carefully instructed in 
and have thoroughly mastered the preliminary lessons. 



. Low. 





Plates 7-A, B, and C. — Parries. 


The Parries. 

Parry Right (Left). 

39. From the position of guard, vigorously straighten the left 
arm without bending the wrists or twisting the rifle in the hands, 
at the same time engaging opponent's piece and deflecting it just 
clear of your body, forcing your body forward to the full extent 
of your reach. Keep the barrel up, the point threatening the 
opponent's body, preferably his throat. If the parry right is 
properly made, it is easy to kill the opponent with the thrust 
which immediately follows — in fact, the opponent will usually 
impale himself on your point. In parry left the point is carried 
out of line with your opponent's body, but can be quickly brought 
back, as it is nearer this line than the opponent's point. Parry 
left is followed up at once either with a thrust or a butt stroke 
to the ribs or jaw. During the parry the eyes must be kept on 
the point of the weapon being parried, but, having completed the 
parry, the eyes are instantly fixed on the part of the opponent's 
body to be attacked. (Plates 7-A, 7-B, and 7-C.) 
Fending Off. 

In addition, practice must be given in fending off the opponent's 
point with either bayonet or rifle in any position. 
Common Faults. 

(1) Wide sweeping parry with no forward movement in it. 

(2) Eyes taken off the point of the weapon to be parried. 

(3) Making the arms do ail the work and not getting the 
weight, strength, and momentum of the body into the parry. 

(4) Parry lacking force. 

Men should be taught to regard the parry as an offensive 

Parries will be practiced with the right as well as with the left 
foot forward preparatory to the practice of parrying when 

Men when learning the parries should be made to observe the 
movements of the. rifle carefully, and should not be kept longer 
at this practice than is necessary for them to understand what is 
required ; that is, vigorous, yet controlled, action. 
First Practice. 

The class works in pairs, with scabbards on bayonets : one man 
thrusts with a stick and the other parries. The "guard" position 
is resumed after each parry. At first this practice must be slow 


Plate 8-A. — Short Thrust. 

Plate 8-B, 



and deliberate with- 
out letting it be- 
come mechanical. It 
will be increased in 
rapidity and vigor 
as the instruction 

Care must be 
taken that the man 
thrusting with the 
stick does not swing 
it into the man with 
the rifle. If the man 
makes sweeping 
movements with 
the stick, the man 
with the rifle will 
probably develop 
sweeping parries. 
Second Practice. 

Sticks long 
enough to repre- 
sent the opponent's 
weapon in the 
"guard" position 
should be attached 
to the dummies and 

The men must 
also be taught to 
parry thrusts made 
at them (1) by an 
"enemy" in a trench 
when they are 
themselves on the 
parapet; (2) by an 
"enemy" on the 
parapet when they 
are in the trench, 
and (3) when both 
are fighting on the 
same level at close 
quarters in a deep 


The Short Thrust. 

40. Shift the left hand quickly towards the muzzle and draw 
the rifle back to the extent of the right arm, this without unduly 
relaxing the grasp of the small of the stock, the butt either up- 
wards or downwards, according as a low or a high thrust is to 
be made ; then deliver the thrust vigorously to the full extent 
of the left arm. 

N. B. — The short thrust is used at a range of about 3 feet, and 
in close fighting it is the natural thrust made when the bayonet 
has just been withdrawn after a long thrust. If a strong with- 
drawal is necessary, t'he right hand should be slipped above the 
rear sight after the "short thrust" has been made. (Plates 8- A 
and 8-B.) Practice. 

41. The principles of the two practices of Lesson I should be 
observed so far as they apply. By placing a disc on each of the 
dummies, the "short thrust" may be taught in conjunction with 
the "long thrust," the first disc being transfixed with the long, 
the second with the short thrust. On delivery of the "long 
thrust," if the left foot is forward, the "short thrust" would take 
place with the right foot forward, and vice versa. 

"Fend off" will be practiced from the position of the "short thrust.'' 


The Jab. 

42. From the position of 
the short thrust, shift the 
right hand up the rifle and 
grasp it above the rear 
sight, at the same time 
bringing the rifle to an al- 
most vertical position close 
to the body, and from this 
position bend the knees, 
and, with the full force of 
the body, stepping in if 
necessary, jab the point of 
the bayonet upwards into 

Plate 9.— Jab. 
the throat -or* other part of the opponent. (Plate 9.) 

The rifle is carried almost to a vertical position, 


because the 

jab is used only in close fighting and when embraced by an 
opponent, and will be made usually at the upper part of oppo- 
nent's body (throat or armpit). The knees are bent in order to 
allow the body to impart a powerful upward movement to the 

Common Faults, 

(1) Rifle drawn backward and not held upright enough. 

(2) Rifle grasped too low with the right hand. 

(3) Doing all the work with the arms and not putting the 
whole body into it. 

(4) Not pressing the rifle against the leg. 

(5) Jab not vigorous enough and too high. 

From the "jab" position men will be practiced in fending off 
an attack made at any part of them. 

The "jab" is employed in close-quarter fighting in narrow 
trenches and when "embraced" by an opponent. 

After any move that carries the point beyond the enemy, if 
possible, come immediately to the short thrust or jab position; 
that is, keep your point between you and your enemy, 


Methods of Injuring an Opponent. 

43. It should be impressed upon the class that, although a man's 
"thrust" has missed or has been parried, or his bayonet has been 
broken, he can, as "attacker," still maintain his advantage by 
injuring his opponent. 

In individual fighting the butt can also be used horizontally 
against the opponent's jaw, etc. This method is impossible in 
trench fighting or in an attack, owing to the horizontal sweep of 
the bayonet to the attacker's left. In many instances a kick to 
kneecap or crotch will aid the butt stroke. 

A butt stroke or kick will only temporarily disable an enemy, 
who must be immediately killed zvith the bayonet. 

It should be clearly understood that the butt must not be 
employed when it is possible to use the point of the bayonet 

Trench or Vertical Butt Strokes. 

44. Butt Stroke i. — Swing up the butt at the opponent's crotch, 
ribs, forearm, etc., using a half-arm blow, advancing with the 
rear foot. 

Butt Stroke 2. — If the opponent jumps back so that the first 


butt stroke misses, the 
rifle will come into 
a horizontal position 
over the left shoulder, 
butt leading. The at- 
tackei will then step 
in with the rear foot 
and dash the butt into 
his opponent's face. 

Butt Stroke 3. — If 
the opponent retires still 
further out of distance , 
the attacker again closes 
up and slashes his bayo- 
net down on the op- 
ponent's head or neck, 
the latter if he is wear- 
ing a steel helmet. In 
the event of missing, he 
will then be in the guard 

Butt m Stroke 4.—U 
the point is beaten or 
brought down, the butt 
can be used effectively 
by crashing it down on 
the opponent's head 
with an over-arm blow, 
advancing the rear foot. 
When the opponent is 
out of distance Butt 
Stroke 3 can again be 
used. (Plates 10-A and 

Open Ground or Hori- 
zontalTButt Strokes 

45. Butt Stroke 1. — 
Advancing the rear 
foot, with a half-arm 
blow swing the butt up 
at opponent's jaw. 

Plate 10-A. — Vertical Butt Stroke No. 1. 

late 10-B. — Horizontal Butt Stroke No. 1 

Butt Stroke 2. — If the opponent jumps back so that the first 
stroke misses the rifle will come into a horizontal position over 
the left shoulder, butt leading. The attacker will then step in 
with the rear foot and slash the bayonet into opponent's face. 

If the opponent retires further out of distance, the attacker will 
now be in the guard position. 

46. Butt Stroke 1 is essentially a half-arm blow from the 
shoulder, keeping the elbow rigid, and it can, therefore, be suc- 
cessfully employed only when tue right hand is grasping the 
rifle at the small of the stock. 

47. Butt strokes can only be used in certain circumstances and 
positions, but if men acquire absolute control of their weapons 
under these conditions they will be able to adapt themselves to 
all other phases of in-fighting. For instance, when a man is 
gripped by an opponent so that neither the point nor the butt 
can be used, the knee, brought up against the crotch or the heel 
stamped on the instep, may momentarily disable him and make 
him release his hold. 

48. When the classes have been shown the methods of using 
the kick, the rifle butt, and the knee, they should be practiced on 
the stick, e. g. y fix several discs on a dummy and make a thrust art 
one, use the knee on another fixed low down, jab a third, and 
so on. 

Light dummies should be used for practice with the butt, in 
order to avoid damage to it. 

49. For other methods of injuring an opponent, see "Hand-to- 
Hand Fighting," published by the Infantry School of Arms for 
use in training the United States Army. 

To Disarm an Opponent. 

50. Fend off opponent's thrust with your right hand. Step 
forward and seize his left hand with both of yours, your left 
under his palm, your right over his fingers. Give a sharp twist 

51. Parry opponent's thrust with your left hand. Step in and 
seize his left wrist firmly with your right hand ; grasp the rifle 
just below the bayonet with your left hand, back of hand down, 
and swing it violently upward and over to the right, at the same 
time stepping in and kicking or bringing your left knee into the 
lower part of your opponent's body. 

52. Parry opponent's thrust outward with your right hand; 
stepping in, kick him in the crotch or on the shin. Grasp the 
rifle just below the bayonet with your right hand, back of hand 


down, and swing it upward and over to the left; force the point 
of the bayonet to the ground, and, stepping in, back-heel your 

53. Lesson I: 

(1) Short talk on use and spirit of the bayonet. 

(2) Explain vulnerable parts of body. 

(3) Take class to withdrawal boards and show them the 
necessity for a strong jerk in withdrawing. Then let class 
practice same sharp jerk on withdrawal from dummy. 

(4) Fall class in. Explain and cause them to take the usual 
formation for instruction. Demonstrate guard. Class prac- 
tices this while instructor corrects faults. 

(5) Demonstrate high port from guard. Advancing in guard 
position short charge, quickening exercise. 

(6) Demonstrate long thrust., getting full reach,, withdrawal 
and return to guard. Class practice at will, slowly at first, then 

Plate 11. — Attacking with Training Stick. 

increasing speed, instructor correcting faults. Repeat at dum- 
mies, advancing long thrust at dummies, slipping left hand up 
to withdraw. From now on all long thrusts will be made while 
advancing, the left hand being slipped up for the withdrawal. 

(7) Thrusting at ring while advancing, hand slipped up for 
withdrawal as at dummies and either foot being brought up. 


if necessary, to obtain movement of the hand. First demon- 
strated by instructor ; then done by the men, working in pairs, 
as master and pupil, and correcting each other's faults. 

(8) Thrusting at hand, by signal. Same as (7). 
Lesson II. — Parries. 

(9) Review Lesson I. 

(10) Demonstrate parries. Have class execute; instructor 
correct errors. High and low parries, taught from trench and 

(11) Master and pupil, parries by signal. 

(12) Man with rifle parry thrust from training stick. Thrust 
made very slowly at first. 

(13) With training stick, parry thrust made by charging 

Note. — Attacker starts at high port, then comes to guard, 
and when within about 5 feet of defender removes right or 
left hand, 'according to whether attack is made on left or right 
side. (Plate 11.) 

(14) At dummies — advance, parry stick, and thrust (training 
stick attached to dummy to represent enemy's weapon). 

Lesson III. — Short Thrust, 

(15) Review previous lessons. 

(16) Explain when used. Demonstrate at two dummies 
placed in suitable positions. (This should be done by instructor 
advancing, making long thrust, slipping left hand up and with- 
drawing. He is then in short-thrust position, and will deliver 
short thrust, advancing rear foot.) 

(17) Advancing long thrust; withdraw, slipping. up left 
hand; advancing, short thrust; withdraw, slipping up right 
hand under left. At hand by signal; at thrusting ring and at 

(18) Fend off from short-thrust position. 

Lesson IV.— Jab. 

(19) Review previous lessons. 

(20) Explain when used. Demonstrate at dummies. (In- 
structor advances, makes long thrust, withdraws ; makes short 
thrust, withdraws ; lowers butt and from this position delivers 
jab, advancing rear foot, if necessary.) 

(21) Advancing long thrust, short thrust, and jab by hand 
signal, at thrusting ring and at dummies. 

(22) Fend off from jab position. 


Lessen V. — Butt Strokes, etc. 

(23) Review previous lessons. 

(24) Explain and demonstrate vertical and horizontal butt 
strokes, using dummies. 

(25) Butt strokes practiced by hand signal, at padded end 
of training stick and at dummies. 

(26) Toe to knee, heel to instep and knee to crotch, using 
padded end of stick. 

(27) Demonstrate disarming tricks, bone-breaking holds, etc. 

54. Having completed the five lessons as above described, the 
recruit is ready to begin the assault training, reviewing each day, 
however, the movements of the recruit course. 


Circle Exercises, Hand Parries, etc. 

55. (a) At the command "Form circle," the pupils, not more 
than ten in number, form in a circle, facing the trainer with an 
interval of about three paces, at the position of ''guard," bayonet 
scabbards on. The trainer thrusts in varying order with the 
training stick at the pupils, who "parry" from the position of 
"guard," "short guard," and "jab," and thrust or rush in and jab 
at trainer, who retires rapidly. 

(b) Face the pupils about. — At a touch from the "training 
stick," the pupil whirls about and attacks the thrusting ring with 
the thrust or jab, as the distance between his point and the stick 
indicates. If the ring- 
is holed, the with- 
drawal is made and 
the position of 
"guard" resumed. If 
the first effort is a 
miss, the pupil will 
come on with "short 
thrust" and "jab" 
until successful. 

If the trainer pre- 
sents the padded end 
of the stick, the pupil 
makes butt stroke 
one at it. If this is a 
miss, he comes on Plate 12. — Circle Exercise. 


with butt stroke two, etc., until he hits the padded end. As soon as 
he hits it he resumes the guard, facing out. To practice the pupil 
in all the butt strokes, the instructor jerks the stick away a short 
distance just before butt stroke one; hits it, causing the pupil to 
miss and come on with butt stroke two. Just before butt stroke 
two hits the stick, the trainer again jerks it away, causing the 
pupil to miss and come on with a slash. (Plate 12.) 

(c) Men in pairs, one with rifle in guard position, the other on 
either side offers the ring or padded end of the stick in varying 
positions in front and behind. The man with the rifle attacks 
the stick as laid down in paragraph (b). 

(d) To practice "long thrust," "short thrust," and "jab" against 
an opponent : 

One line of men, with bayonets and scabbards placed at long- 
thrusting distance before a line of men without arms. 

The armed men make a long thrust, stepping in ; at a hand sig- 
nal made by the unarmed men, the latter step back and with the 
other hand fend the thrust, grab and hold the bayonet to give the 
withdrawal the necessary resistance. At a second signal the 
attack is continued by the short thrust, stepping in, the retreat 
and fend repeated. The two men, now being at close quarters, a 
signal for "jab" is made, the defender grabbing the bavonet and 
resisting the stroke. 

The fend should not be made with the hand indicating the point 
of attack. The signaling hand should remain in place as a point 
at which to aim. The signal should be made with the hand on 
the side of the body at which the attack is to be made. In this 
way the bayonet is quickly pushed outside the line of the body 
with the other hand. 

Wooden Rifles and Personal Combat. 

56. The wooden trifle, like boxing and wrestling, introduces 
into the training the most important element of personal contact, 
without which the true fighting spirit cannot be properly devel- 
oped. The work with the wooden rifles is very slow and easy at 
first, the men gradually working up speed until they come to- 
gether at full tilt. Gloves, masks, and plastrons will always be 
worn, and the instructor is responsible for the prevention of 
serious accidents. Men begin this combat practice by both stand- 
ing still ; then one advances at a walk, the other standing still ; 
then both advancing at a walk; then one man running, the other 
standing still, and, finally, both men advancing at a run. 


Disengage . 

Drop the point of 
the bayonet slightly 
with the left hand 
and bring it up on 
the opposite side of 
the opponent's piece, 
coming in at the 
same time. The 
point should go for- 
ward about a foot in 
the act of passing 
under the enemy's 
rifle. (Plates 13-A, 
B, and C.) (Note.— 
If the opponent's 
point is held low, 
bring your piece to 
the opposite side by 
passing it over his. 
This is the "Cut 

Combat Practice — 

57. Place two men 
20 yards apart in the 
"guard" position. At 
signal, they charge 
each other. Unless a 
clean, hard hit is 
made in 20 seconds, 
they will be sepa- 
rated and a hit count- 
ed against each. 
Never allow men to 
fight for more than 
Dne hit in any assault. 

Occasionally re- 
quire men to hold the 
piece at "short- 
guard." This com- 
pels in-fighting 

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If, during the above rushing, there appear any of the following 
mistakes, fall out the responsible men and let the trainer work 
with them individually until they recover their form. All ten- 
dencies to wildness must be rigorously checked : 

(a) Flagrant loss of aim or balance. 

(b) Light tapping touches. 

(c) Hitting with the side of the bayonet. 

(d) Pushing with the rifle. 

(e) Useless parries or movements of the rifle. 

(f) Slowing up just before the shock. 

Rushing in Groups. 

58. (1) Let one man receive the assault of two or three others, 
placed one behind the other at 10 or 15 paces distance. 

(2) Let one man receive the assault of two others at 6 
paces interval, converging upon his flank, at 20 paces. 

(3) Let one man receive the assault of two others at 6 
paces interval, converging upon him as they come in. 

(4) Have men fight when one is in the trench and one on 
the parapet, and when both men are in a narrow trench. 

(5) Vary these formations in any way that may appear 
valuable and instructive. 

Team Fighting. 

59. After the men have attained proficiency in individual com- 
bat, squad will be opposed to squad and platoon against platoon, 
as in the chapter on Assault Practice, men being substituted for 

Trench Combat. 

60. In trench combat, when you come to a turn in the trench, 
make a quick vault in the next sector of the trench. As you 
land in the next sector, have your rifle in the guard position (on 
the right side if the trench turned to the left, on the left side if 
it turned to the right), ready to beat your opponent's weapon 
aside or make a quick thrust. There is nothing to be gained by 
looking first, and it insures your enemy being ready for you. If 
you come to a place alone where one trench enters another 
about at right angles, it is well to look first, as one man has no 
show if there is an enemy on each side of the entrance. If you 
find one side clear, vault in the other without delaying to look. 
If two men approach such a trench, say, through a communica- 
tion trench, they approach as nearly on a line as the width of the 

trench will permit. One vaults to the right and the other to the 
left without stopping to find out rirst whether the trench is 

Assault Practice. 

61. This must approximate as nearly as possible the conditions 
of actual fighting, and is not to be undertaken until the men have 
received thorough preliminary training and have acquired com- 
plete control of their weapons. 

In any assault the attackers are necessarily subjected to severe- 
physical exertion, as well as to a great nervous tension, while 
the defenders are comparatively fresh. Therefore, quick aim 
and good direction with the bayonet when attacking, while mov- 
ing rapidly or surmounting obstacles, accurate and vigorous de- 
livery of the thrust, and clean, quick withdrawals are of the 
greatest importance, and need the same careful attention and con- 
stant practice as are devoted to obtaining efficiency with the rifle. 

In the assault practice the charge brings the man to the first 
trench in a comparatively exhausted condition, and the accuracy 
of the aim is tested by the disc, which can only be "carried" by 
a true and vigorous thrust and a clean withdrawal. 

For this practice the men should be made to begin the assault 
from a trench 6 or 7 feet deep, as well as from the open, and they 
should not cheer until close up to the "enemy." 

Trench System for Assault Practice. 

62. A reproduction of a labyrinth of trenches, with dummies in 
the "dugouts" and shelters between the trenches, forms an excel- 
lent assault practice course. Assaults should be made from all 
four sides in order to give variety. The edges of the trenches 
should be protected by spars of baulks anchored back: otherwise 
constant use will soon wear them out. Cinders scattered over 
the course will prevent the men from slipping. If gallows cannot 
be erected, sack dummies should be placed on tripods or on end. 
as well as lying in trenches or on the parapet, with soft earth, 
free from stones, under them. 

Combined Tactics. 

63. If a combined bullet and bayonet course is to be had. an 
ingenious instructor can arrange some very interesting and prac- 
tical exercises by combining the tactics of the assault with those 
of other branches of infantry training. 

Training- Soldiers Daily Practice. 

64. One-half hour a day, on at least five days a week, should 


be devoted to the practice of bayonet fighting by trained soldiers. 
By this daily practice accuracy of direction, quickness, and 
strength are developed, and a soldier is accustomed to using the 
bayonet under conditions which approximate actual fighting. 
This half-hour will be given over largely to assault training, the 
instructor, however, going back to a short review of any part of 
the recruit course whenever he deems it necessary. This practice 
includes : 

(a) Bayonet practice. 

(b) Individual combat. 

(c) Firing at moving, bobbing, and disappearing targets, 
and rapid fire. 

(d) Counter-charging. 

(e) Combination of musketry, bayonet, and grenade. 



65. It has already been said that the bayonet is one of the most 
important weapons of the infantry. Therefore, in order to arrive 
at the correct use of the bayonet, we must bear constantly in 
mind just what tasks the infantry is called upon to perform. 
The artillery, with its heavy, long-range guns, is largely respon- 
sible for the process of "digging in," but it certainly cannot be 
expected to shoot the enemy out of position, once he is strongly 
entrenched. Only the infantry can gain ground, and, similarly, 
no position is lost until its defending infantry retires. 

The sound, well-established tactical principles of the employ- 
ment of infantry are today unchanged, but the present European 
War has changed somewhat the application of those principles. 
Two long opposing lines, with flanks absolutely secure, make 
any large enveloping movement; impossible, and any attack, great 
or small, local or covering great areas, must be purely frontal. 

The underlying idea of all infantry tactics is to close with the 
enemy as soon as possible and with all the units well in hand. 
The ideal conditions would be those making possible a quiet, 
quick, and orderly advance without halting to open fire, but this 
is impossible with the highly developed weapons of today, and 
even though some of the attacking infantry managed to close 
with the enemy, there would be too few left for a bayonet fight. 
Therefore, in order to make a successful assault, the infantry 


must move up under covering fire. To provide this protecting 
fire, it has equipped itself with the pistol, bayonet, and high- 
powered rifle, the 1-pounder, trench mortars, the effective hand 
and rifle grenades, and has called to its assistance its supporting 
arm — the artillery. The enemy, attempting to protect himself 
from the terrific fire that he knows will precede the infantry 
attack, has prepared deep dugouts and bombproofs, in which he 
often hides until the last possible minute. 

Despite the fact that all of the above preparations are simply 
to give the bayonet man a chance to use his weapon (and to kill 
as many of the enemy as possible while doing it), it follows that 
lire action is more important than shock action, for without the 
lire the shock would be impossible. Therefore, the bayonet men 
must know how to shoot their rifles and to cooperate with the 
machine gun, the grenade, and the artillery, and must be so 
formed that during the assault they can deliver an effective rifle 
lire, present a solid front to the enemy in the bayonet charge, 
and be close enough together to furnish mutual moral and 
physical support. 

The wave attack that has been used so much in France was 
produced in order to furnish the greatest amount of mutual sup- 
port among automatic riflemen, grenadiers, the 1-pounders, and 
riflemen, and at the same time to allow the greatest number of 
riflemen (bayonet men) to close with the enemy in the best 
formation possible. All of the conditions so far discussed make 
it imperative that the assaulting troops be perfectly organized, 
and that they follow their covering fire (barrage) as closely a^ 

As indicated above, the defenders are forced to retire to their 
dugouts, where they may easily remain too long. An attack has 
the best chance of succeeding when it can meet the defenders 
emerging from their dugouts, but if the assaulting troops are met 
by the defenders on their own parapet, the assault will probably 
fail. Thus a few seconds will turn the scales, and for that reason 
the assault must keep moving forward. If firing is possible, it 
must be done from the shoulder or hip while advancing. The 
men must rise from the starting trench as one man and advance 
as one man. Thereafter the advance continues at a steady walk, 
except for the last 30 or 40 yards before reaching each trench, 
when the line breaks into a slow double time, finishing up the las: 
few yards at a run and without yelling. This favors the surprise 
element. Once in the enemy's trench, shock action is impossible. 


and it is merely a question of our ability and will to use the 

The bayonet man, when working in the trenches with grena- 
diers, must cover their advance, prevent them from being rushed, 
and clear the way for further progress, never forgetting, in his 
desire to use the bayonet, that he is also master of the bullet. 
In the actual melee, however, the enemy must be killed with the 
bayonet, since the bullet would probably be as dangerous for 
friend as for foe. 

Darkness or surprise effect sometimes replaces the covering 
fire. Surprise is always of great assistance to the bayonet man, 
and at night all available cover can be easily used, but long, 
careful training and frequent rehearsals of the particular attack 
are necessary to prevent confusion during night operations. 

To sum up, the bayonet is only an offensive weapon, and its 
users must move over short distances straight up to the enemy's 
position and without halting to fire. All the other details of an 
assault are to give the bayonet man an opportunity to close with 
the enemy, and the success of an attack depends upon, first, 
whether or not sufficient men can reach the enemy, and, second, 
having closed with him, whether or not they are imbued with the 
spirit of the bayonet. 

Any number of excellent combined problems may be worked 
out. The following are some that will prove particularly inter- 
esting and instructive. In the solution of these problems a trench 
system must be had, umpires used, and often it will be necessary 
to arrange distinguishing marks for opposing sides : 

(1) A detachment of Reds is ordered to attack a certain 
point in a quiet Blue front line trench and capture one or more 

(2) The conduct of a Red detachment while driving a Blue 
detachment down Blue's communication trench to his second 
line trench. 

(3) A Red patrol of bombers and bayonet men in No Man's 
Land at night unexpectedly encounters a Blue patrol. 

(4) Reds have assaulted and taken a Blue position, and are 
engaged in consolidating it when Blues counter attack: 

(a) Reds have plenty of ammunition. 

(b) Reds have no ammunition. 

(Note. — Reds may or may not have automatic rifle.) 

(5) Defending Reds to meet assaulting Blues with a counter 


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